Barker- strong shot, good physicality, yet is not good defensively nor a good skater (did put up 40 points in 69 several seasons ago)
Ballard- highest potential reward (has put up 30 points but in bigger roles), yet comes at high price and is seen as being underutilized for his role (plus he sometimes has defensive lapses); could benefit from getting new opportunity as a Top 4 man on another team but also provides skilled depth... oh, and MASSIVE hip checks
Vandermeer- physical, somewhat stay-at-home type, can put up modest point totals but slow and takes penalties
Tanev- safe and steady, can move the puck YET doesn't play physically nor is he the best equipped to be shutdown man (and his shot definitely needs work)
I think in terms of playing styles Barker could potentially be an upgrade on Ballard for the role he plays, plus he comes at a lower cost. Vandermeer, with his physicality, size, okay defense and not-bad point scoring (he put up 14 points two seasons ago) should, in my opinion, put him as a viable option for the 3rd pairing (though the reason I say this is that Tanev could benefit from having more opportunities to play offense and work on his shot in the AHL in a top-pairing role rather than getting limited to a stick-checking role with limited touches of the puck, since Ballard does all the puck-moving).
I actually wouldn't mind seeing (given that they prove themselves as being capable at camp)
Barker - Tanev (presuming Ballard gets traded, Barker should be able to fill in at least to some capacity, plus he's got more size to really handle the tough going; again, if Tanev's not developing offensively (it's not that likely that he would on the 3rd pairing anyways) I wouldn't hesitate to bring up Vandermeer to take the strictly defensive minutes).
I think these two can actually balance each other out quite well; Barker can hammer the puck, Tanev can't really; Barker can play physically, Tanev isn't built for it; Tanev can skate and move the puck safely (he'd be driving the play from the back end instead of the then-departed Ballard) and Tanev can cover Barker's mistakes. Sounds like a pretty solid pairing to me.
How do you see the bottom pairing shaping up? What's the reasoning for your pairing?
Edited by g@m3b0i, 14 January 2013 - 11:13 PM.